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Revelation 21:14-27

Context
21:14 The 1  wall of the city has twelve foundations, and on them are the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

21:15 The angel 2  who spoke to me had a golden measuring rod with which to measure the city and its foundation stones and wall. 21:16 Now 3  the city is laid out as a square, 4  its length and width the same. He 5  measured the city with the measuring rod 6  at fourteen hundred miles 7  (its length and width and height are equal). 21:17 He also measured its wall, one hundred forty-four cubits 8  according to human measurement, which is also the angel’s. 9  21:18 The city’s 10  wall is made 11  of jasper and the city is pure gold, like transparent glass. 12  21:19 The foundations of the city’s wall are decorated 13  with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation is jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, 14  the fourth emerald, 21:20 the fifth onyx, 15  the sixth carnelian, 16  the seventh chrysolite, 17  the eighth beryl, 18  the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, 19  the eleventh jacinth, 20  and the twelfth amethyst. 21:21 And the twelve gates are twelve pearls – each one of the gates is made from just one pearl! The 21  main street 22  of the city is pure gold, like transparent glass.

21:22 Now 23  I saw no temple in the city, because the Lord God – the All-Powerful 24  – and the Lamb are its temple. 21:23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, because the glory of God lights it up, and its lamp is the Lamb. 21:24 The nations 25  will walk by its light and the kings of the earth will bring their grandeur 26  into it. 21:25 Its gates will never be closed during the day 27  (and 28  there will be no night there). 29  21:26 They will bring the grandeur and the wealth 30  of the nations 31  into it, 21:27 but 32  nothing ritually unclean 33  will ever enter into it, nor anyone who does what is detestable 34  or practices falsehood, 35  but only those whose names 36  are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

1 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.

2 tn Grk “the one”; the referent (the angel of v. 9) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

3 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the somewhat parenthetical nature of the description of the city.

4 tn Or “the city lies square.” On κεῖμαι (keimai) in this context, BDAG 537 s.v. 2 states, “lie, of things…ἡ πόλις τετράγωνος κεῖται is laid out as a square Rv 21:16.”

5 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.

6 tn Grk “with the rod”; the word “measuring” is supplied from the description in v. 15.

7 tn Or “two thousand two hundred kilometers,” Grk “12,000 stades.” A stade was a measure of length about 607 ft (185 m).

8 tn Here the measurement was kept in cubits in the translation because of the possible symbolic significance of the number 144 (12 times 12). This is about 216 ft (65 m).

9 tn Here L&N 81.1 translate the phrase μέτρον ἀνθρώπου, ὅ ἐστιν ἀγγέλου (metron anqrwpou, {o estin angelou) “‘the unit of measurement used by a person, that is, by an angel’ Re 21:17.” It is more likely that μέτρον is an accusative of respect or reference.

10 tn Grk “and its wall”; the referent of the pronoun (the city) has been specified in the translation for clarity. Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.

11 tn The phrase ἡ ἐνδώμησις τοῦ τείχους (Jh endwmhsi" tou teicou") is difficult to translate precisely. BDAG 334 s.v. ἐνδώμησις states, “primary mng. ‘interior structure’; in our lit. prob.=construction, hence material τοῦ τείχους Rv 21:18.” The phrase could then be translated, “the foundation of the city wall was jasper” or “the material used for the wall of the city was jasper.” The latter alternative has been used in the translation because the text goes on to discuss the foundation in 21:19 (using the term θεμέλιος [qemelios]), which is somewhat redundant if the foundation is mentioned here.

12 tn Or “transparent crystal.” See L&N 6.222, which notes the emphasis is on transparency here. The same Greek word, καθαρός (kaqaros), means both “pure” (referring to the gold) and “transparent” (referring to the glass).

13 tn The perfect participle here has been translated as an intensive (resultative) perfect.

14 sn Agate (also called chalcedony) is a semiprecious stone usually milky or gray in color (L&N 2.32).

15 sn Onyx (also called sardonyx) is a semiprecious stone that comes in various colors (L&N 2.35).

16 sn Carnelian is a semiprecious gemstone, usually red in color (L&N 2.36).

17 sn Chrysolite refers to either quartz or topaz, golden yellow in color (L&N 2.37).

18 sn Beryl is a semiprecious stone, usually blue-green or green in color (L&N 2.38).

19 sn Chrysoprase is a greenish type of quartz (L&N 2.40).

20 sn Jacinth is a semiprecious stone, probably blue in color (also called “hyacinth,” but that translation is not used here because of possible confusion with the flower of the same name). See L&N 2.41.

21 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.

22 tn The Greek word πλατεῖα (plateia) refers to a major (broad) street (L&N 1.103).

23 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the transition to a new topic. Every verse from here to the end of this chapter begins with καί in Greek, but due to differences between Greek and contemporary English style, these have not been translated.

24 tn On this word BDAG 755 s.v. παντοκράτωρ states, “the Almighty, All-Powerful, Omnipotent (One) only of God…() κύριος ὁ θεὸς ὁ π. …Rv 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7; 21:22.”

25 tn Or “the Gentiles” (the same Greek word may be translated “Gentiles” or “nations”).

26 tn Or “splendor”; Grk “glory.”

27 tn On the translation “during the day” see BDAG 436 s.v. ἡμέρα 1.a, “But also, as in Thu. et al., of time within which someth. occurs, ἡμέρας during the day Rv 21:25.”

28 tn The Greek connective γάρ (gar) most often expresses some sort of causal connection. However, in this context there is no causal force to the second phrase; γάρ simply expresses continuation or connection. Because of this it has been translated as “and.” See BDAG 189-90 s.v. 2.

29 tn The clause has virtually the force of a parenthetical comment.

30 tn Grk “honor,” but BDAG 1005 s.v. τιμή 2.b states, “An outstanding feature of the use of τ., as already shown in several passages, is its combination w. δόξα…of earthly possessions τὴν δόξαν καὶ τὴν τιμὴν τῶν ἐθνῶν Rv 21:26 (τιμή concr.=an object of value: Ezk 22:25).”

31 tn Or “the Gentiles” (the same Greek word may be translated “Gentiles” or “nations”).

32 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.

33 tn Here BDAG 552 s.v. κοινός 2 states, “pert. to being of little value because of being common, common, ordinary, profane…b. specifically, of that which is ceremonially impure: Rv 21:27.”

34 tn Or “what is abhorrent”; Grk “who practices abominations.”

35 tn Grk “practicing abomination or falsehood.” Because of the way βδέλυγμα (bdelugma) has been translated (“does what is detestable”) it was necessary to repeat the idea from the participle ποιῶν (poiwn, “practices”) before the term “falsehood.” On this term, BDAG 1097 s.v. ψεῦδος states, “ποιεῖν ψεῦδος practice (the things that go with) falsehood Rv 21:27; 22:15.” Cf. Rev 3:9.

36 tn Grk “those who are written”; the word “names” is implied.



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